Monday, May 6, 2013

Trapeze School

Have you ever done something you are soooo incredibly afraid of?!  Like, pee-your-pants, can't-imagine-ever, dear-God-please-help-me afraid of?!  That is me with heights.  So, I decided to face that fear and go to TSNY Los Angeles AKA trapeze school!!!

When I arrived for my first class, the AMAZING instructors started by strapping me into my safety belt, and with ground work -  how to hold the bar, how to set up my body to jump, what different "calls" or instructions mean, how to release, etc.  They also let me know expectations for my first class: at the end of the 2 hour class, not only should I be able to back flip out of a knee-hanging trick (don't worry, you'll see it!), but I should also be able to release and catch on to another person swinging (that person being a qualified trapeze teacher, of course!)

I took all the instructions on the ground and was sure once I was up on the platform, I would have it down. I mean, I teach fitness classes after all.  I am smart, strong, quick on my feet.  I can hop, point my toes, and swing in the air - duh!

Well, once I climbed the seemingly never ending ladder to the top of the platform (which is 23 feet high, perceived 28 feet with your own height) panic set in.  Not only were tears falling down my face, but I was trembling so much that I thought my knees would give out.  It didn't matter that I was strapped in to safety lines, and had three amazing coaches letting me know that climbing down the ladder was much harder than taking "just one swing and I would be done" down onto the net.

Nearly ready to vomit and wanting anything to save me from this insane anxiety, I decided on one jump.  With the assistance of Christina, my platform guru, and a few OMf***G hesitations (by a few I mean eight) off I went! Ready, hep, swing! Ready means bend your knees, hep means jump and release!!!

This is me screaming my head off while also feeling a sense of HUGE accomplishment!!! I actually had a great grip, awesome straight legs and pointed toes, and felt on top of the world. The safety net coach let me swing a few times to "get a feel for it" and then I heard "hep" to release.

And I'm freeeeeeee, freeeee fallen!!!

I proceeded to not only climb back up (8 more times!!!), but I nailed the knee hang trick, a back flip release and the catch with the instructor!!

The instructors kept calling me the "come back kid".  I somehow went from petrified to thrilled!

If you are EVER in a city with trapeze school - JUST DO IT! There is nothing like the feeling of freedom and strength that comes with the experience.  I loved it so much, I already bought two more classes and I plan to take Mr. Arotin with me to at least one!

What have you done recently to face your fears?



P.S. This is a video of my first knee hang with back flip!  I didn't get a shot of the catch, but it was amazing!!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Perks, Points + Challenges

Team exhale Santa Monica at our class challenge party!
Switching careers as taught me sooooo much about business outside of the 9-5 world.  I have found that the most important difference is that there is no sacred day off. No day free of sales, deals, specials, events etc.  Everyday is a day to meet a new client, gain customer loyalty, and let's get to the point - make money.  Mother's Day, Christmas, Turkey Day - doesn't matter, the whole objective is to increase new clients and reaffirm the loyalty of existing clients.

One thing that seems to work for us at exhale in attracting new clients and retaining old ones are frequency challenges.  We give our guests a goal of taking X classes or getting X therapies and they win X.  Its so AMAZING to me how people commit themselves to doing whatever it is you want, for a prize! (Even if its something small.)

When I think about it, I'm exactly the same way.  The day I become a Sephora VIB (After I bought The Buttercup - which is AMAZING!), I felt like I won the lottery!! One free makeover (after spending like a bazillion dollars in the store) made my entire day! I'm the same way with my UnitedPlus card.  I seriously get so pumped to spend money so I can get my points (and every 4th, 5th, 10th flight free)!

Last month at exhale Santa Monica we did an employee class challenge with the reward of being invited to an exclusive party for the winners. The picture above is of 14 of the 16 winners.  I have never seen my team so excited, motivated, or competitive - all over a party!

Are you motivated by perks, points or challenges when you shop, at your gym, etc.?  What makes us go bonkers for a free makeover....when we've obviously actually paid WAY MORE MONEY than a makeover should ever cost?!

A little bizznass food for thought for you lovelies today!


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Family + Technology

Being from Oklahoma and living in Santa Monica has its challenges, as I am sure any of you who live far from your family can relate too.  It seems sometimes like my heart stays divided in two places. The birth of my cute-as-pie niece, Dylan, has made the distance seem even further than it used too. 

In comes technology to the rescue!  Face timing with her sweet face makes the distance seem a little shorter.  She's nearly ten months now (how did that happen!) and she actually recognizes my voice and my face over the Iphone!  It warms my heart to know that technology will always keep us connected even when I have to wait months for my next visit.

Do you use technology to keep in touch with your distant family?  If not, you should!  Family dates over facetime are the best!


P.S. Please excuse my ridculous face in this picture. I was saying "Dyl-dyl, dyl-dyl" to get her attention. She was having to much fun splish-splashing, so she wouldn't look at me!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mint Manicure

I don't usually go rogue when it comes to my nails.  Clean, fresh, light staple.  Recently, I decided to play with a mint (because I have become obsessed with the color!) and I LOVE it.  Also, notice my hammered gold ring?!  That was my second anniversary gift.  I love the mixed metal look!

Do you play with crazy colors on your nails?  What is your staple?



Friday, April 19, 2013

It's Friday, I'm in Love....

Image Source:

...with this hilarious onesie!  Did you all know that I am going to auntie awesome again?!  With a BOY this time!  I will glady take the responsibility of ensuring that young Mr. Pride is completely Harry Potter educated.

....with these mugs! Okay, so maybe I am a little bratty loving these because I MADE THEM for Mr. Arotin as an anniversary gift.  I used these mugs and this paint.  Now our coffee mugs are an appropriate size (since I was told constantly that our set of mugs are too small.).

 ..with this AMAZING salsa.  Pioneer Woman, you have wowed me again.

...with my new Tieks! OMG, I am in love. Comfortable, soft, chic. RUN get some.

Image Source: unknown
...with this SO TRUE quote.

What a week this has been, huh?  My heart is in Oklahoma today and my thoughts and prayers are with Boston.  Sometimes in the midst of stark sadness, we have to create our own sunshine.  We have to be the ones who smile and try to shine positivty towards those who need it most.

Give your loved ones big hugs this weekend and I hope the sun is shining where you are.


Thursday, April 18, 2013


Hey Loves!

So, with my new well not really new, but new to you because I have been a blogging slacker awesome role at exhale has come a whole new world of learning.  I am sooo not complaining since learning is one of my favorite things. In fact, one of my favorite things to learn about is skin care! I mean, who doesn't want to beat aging?  Who doesn't want to look young forever?  Who doesn't want to always seem effortlessly beautiful, right?!!

At exhale, we carry a few great lines, but one has REALLLLLY captured my eye recently. It makes my skin glow, makes my heart happy, and is at a great price point.

I love Acti AWESOME! AKA Actifirm.

What makes their line so amazing, you ask?  For starters, they are based in the Dallas area (so close to Oklahoma that it makes my heart happy). They also have a special patent on a mushroom enzyme that makes their Z-Peel and MUST for at home skin care.  I use it three times a week in the shower and Mr. Arotin has actually noticed a difference. (When a man notices, its the REAL DEAL.) Also, for all you mommies out there, its completely safe and awesome for pregnant and nursing women.

Side note: you don't have to hide inside after doing one of their peels! Sun exposure is a-okay after an Acitfirm Z-Peel, so its s great line to carry with you into the summer!

Enough of my take on the product, why don't you try some yourself?  They do a Discovery Kit for $42 including a cleanser, z-peel, serum and booster (their version of moisturizer). Or you can come see me at exhale in Santa Monica to pick one up. WHAT'S NOT TO LOVE?!



Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Second Anniversary

After celebrating sixty-licious with my mom, I was on a quick flight back to LA in order to hop into the car with the handsome guy above for our second anniversary trip to Paso Robles and Santa Ynez!  We did a little vow renewal ceremony for our first anniversary, but were WAY to wined-out from our wedding, so we saved a wine tasting trip for year number two.

Our first stop was a wine club member pick up party at Cass Winery!  There was a band playing, a taco truck, awesome wine and a super fun time.  If you are EVER up in Paso you HAVE TO go to Cass - great wines, beautiful space and they have a horseshoe pit! What's not to love?!

Our next stop was Oso Libre.  This is such an amazing place.  They are 100% off the grid and provide all of their own power and water via a windmill, solar panels and an awesome well.  Their reds are amazing and its still family owned and opperated!

Side note! Those awesome pants I am wearing are Lauren Conrad from Kohls! I didn't bring any pants with me to Paso (stupid girl, April is still cold on the Central Coast), so I bought some!  Fun color, awesome fit, great price.  RUN GET SOME.

 Next stop, Justin. AKA red wine mecca. (Side note - we didn't do these all in one day!)

We joined the wine club when we visited, and were whisked away to this chateau for a little members-only tasting.   I mean, seriously?!

This is Mr. Arotin's "I'm wine tasting royalty" face. Ha!

We had some great food in Paso as well.  Our favorites, as always, were Vic's Cafe (think central coast diner with a great wine list and Cowboy Eggs Benedict) and Thomas Hill Organics.  Must goes if you are ever in the area.

On our way down south to Santa Ynez Valley we stopped at the Hearst Castle.  We were the only people within our age range by about 15 years, but the views were worth it.

Our first stop in Santa Ynez was Lafond Winery and Vineyards, the beautiful site of our wedding. Two years ago, we were married right under that arch and olive tree....le sigh..

We picked up a couple of bottles of their Chardonnay - a don't miss for sure!

The last stop on our trip and a HUGE best-kept-white-wine-lovers-secret was Brander. HOLY awesome Sav Blanc. So good, in fact, Mr. Arotin let me join their white wine club! Yippie! Wine club for the wife!

I would say we did great wine tasting (and purchasing!) work on our trip - wouldn't you?!

Mr. Arotin, thank you for an amazing time and two plus years of the best days of my life!


Mrs. Arotin - two years and counting!